Jane O’Meara Sanders is an entrepreneur in the public realm, a community activist, youth advocate, wife, mother and grandmother. She has been a political advisor and strategist throughout the years to her husband, Vermont Senator and U.S. presidential candidate Bernie Sanders. Together they have four children and seven grandchildren. Family has always been, and continues to be, the most important aspect of Jane’s life.
As a Co-Founder of the Sanders Institute, Jane works to actively engage citizens and media in the pursuit of progressive solutions to economic, environmental, racial and social justice issues.
In the past, Sanders has served in both appointed and elected office. As a municipal department head in the City of Burlington, Dr. Sanders represented Burlington’s youth on all city issues, created a citywide vision for children and families, drafted
legislative initiatives, built both a teen center and child care center, and addressed concerns such as youth unemployment, substance abuse and juvenile crime. And, as a member of two mayoral cabinets, she played a leadership role in the organizational, budgetary and political aspects of local government.
She has served as Interim President/Provost of her alma-mater, Goddard College, and as President of Burlington College, where she was given the title of President Emerita upon leaving, until then a distinction only given to the college’s founder.
As a senior partner in a Burlington-based consulting firm, Sanders provided educational and political consulting and worked on federal, state and local political campaigns.
Dr. Sanders earned her Ph.D. with a concentration in leadership and policy studies from Union Institute & University. She also completed Harvard University’s Institute for Educational Management and Presidents Seminars.